Trying Something Different

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Hello Big World! I know , I know, its been months.  It’s not  you, its me, lol.  So, if I’m being honest, I have been a lump.  I am dealing with chronic illness ( fibro and still undiagnosed “Meganitis ” )  and all the joys ( NOT ) that go along with it and basically just trying to stay afloat in this crazy world.  Long story short, I am in pain everyday.  And fatigued. Good Lord, the exhaustion !  I wish I could find a way to combat it.

So, I have been wallowing in this pit of dispair and honestly , its been 2 years I have been down , if we are counting .   I have let it hold me back and control me and I need to break free . I have read several times that exercising , while it will hurt, in the long run , I will feel better. I think I owe it to myself to explore these options.

Nothing in life would make me happier than returning to Coach Jane and Crossroads .  Unfortunately that is not in the cards right now, but I am not writing it off down the road a ways.  I need something I can do when I have energy, which means working out at home.  I need need something low impact while my body adjusts .

So, I have decided to try something new to see if it helps me. I could be completly wrong and this could blow up in my face, but I am going to give it a go. I am currently on Gabapentin for my issues and let me tell you , I thought I was nuts when I had gained 40 lbs, but it turns out , lots of folks gain weight with Gabapentin. I need a way to combat it, cause honestly , I am less sore when I take my meds and really don’t want to change that up right now.

I joined some Fibro support groups to see if I could relate to some folks and get just some general info.  Its a real great forum .  Here and there folks would post about if they were working out and the thing that came up more and more was Yoga and Piyo . Piyo is a Beachbody program.  After a lot of research and speaking to people, I decided to give Piyo and the Beachbody programs a try. I am a bit nervous since even when I was working out, yoga was not something I was into, but I kinda need this is going to be my wheelhouse for a while.

I plan on diving in tomorrow .  I gotta get a yoga mat.  I will check in and let you all know what I think .

Hopefully, I can find the balance and shake this funk.

Thanks for coming on the swim folks!

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Baby Steps

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Good Evening Everyone !

It is with extreme happiness that I can tell you I finally did it = got my tookus back to the gym!

I got my new medication after my rhumetologist  stepped in  .  It arrived on Friday  and I started the injections that night.

I am still nauseaous, but it is not as much as it was before. I am hopeful that after a few weeks, it will decrease significantly .  The best part is that my doctor okay me getting back to the gym as long as I ” listen to my body “. So, I contacted my coach Jane at       Crossroads Strength and Conditioning to see if it would be okay if I came back with my issues.   And she said of course! Definitly knew that I was going to basically do everything modified but I had to get moving.  ANYTHING is better than nothing, right?!

So, started new meds.

Ready to go back to the gym.

And oh yeah, decided to jump on the Gluten Free train.  Let me explain : I had read multiple articles regarding Gluten and inflammation , so I figure, what the heck, I’ll give it a shot. So far I am on day 3.  Honestly, this is 2 days better than I thought I was going to do.  I’m not sure how long that I can keep it going, but if it helps, I am going to give it a whirl.

I got back into the gym and the warm up itself was already killing me , lol.  Onto the workout : here is my severly modified version .  No laughing out loud, 🙂

4 rounds

30 wall throws ( like the baby sister of the wall ball ) just tossed the ball at the wall

20 Step ups on the little box

10 DB snatches!!!! 15l bs —–> I LOVE SNATCHES! AND I COULD DO THESE NOT MODIFIED!!!

5 Push ups – these I did standing up leaning into the bar on the rack.  Truth be told, I totally could feel this in my arms and chest way more than any pushups I had done before.

I completed all 4 rounds – total victory ! And under 20 minutes!

This was complete baby steps.  And this will be for quite some time, I am sure.  This time around , I need to do the baby steps.  I used to get really frustrated when I thought of how far I had come or how much I could lift or do, but this time, I can’t be like that .  It’s wasted energy.  I am just going to roll with it and see how it goes.

Its been a productive week so far.  Hoping to get back in the gym tomorrow. Starting slow with 2 times a week.

Gotta Keep Swimming !!!!

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Happy New Year!

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Happy New Year Everyone!

I’ll admit, I have been quite miserable the last few months.  Throwing a personal pity party for myself.  I’m sore, I’m cranky, my appetite is horrendous, medication makes me sick….I have been just ugh.

Welp, I am really going to try and change this around.

I need to honestly, or at least dedicate myself to dealing with this chronic pain better.

For those keeping track, we are on 2 years of my body telling me something is wrong and no doctors being able to figure it out.

Current symptoms include: all over body soreness, painful arm pits ( yes arm pits) , side pain ,chest pain,  my  ” necklace of pain” ( my throat and collar bone area ) , crazy night sweats, fire skin and crazy appetite.

First off, gotta get my meds under control . The metheltrexate i am on is really helping my knees and the arthritis that developed in them , however the medication makes me soooooo nauseous every day ! like every day! i wake up and just want to barf, but i never do, its awful. I just sit and wait for it to pass.  Then there is the Prednisone…. ugh, why do they make it so it helps you feel better but you become a ravenous pig?

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Anyone else have that issue with metheltrexate?  Or Prednisone?

So, my doctors solution to that was changing it to an injectable one, however since i have no “official ” diagnosis and Meganitis is not a recognized disease anywhere, my insurance rejected it.

Ugh. So i was going back and forth with my doctor in messages and getting no where, so I have an appt this Weds. Hopefully I can get on the right path here.

I also am DYING to work out. To say my weight has increased would be a complete understatement, I don’t even recognize myself. I was going to get back at the gym, but then I needed another PET scan and my doctor told me to hold off starting back up .

But, now I NEED to do something. So , I am hoping I can get the ok to start back up , even if its small, and hoping he can do something to offset the appetite.

I never realized just how many people out there are dealing with chronic pain, be it from fibromyalgia, RA or any type of Arthritis , MS, cancers, its really nuts how many people are in the world suffering right now. It’s incredible .

We all find our way to get through the day.  One thing that I have found to help with my daily routine is Plexus. It has been beyond incredible.

They only have a small amount of products, but they have been awesome.  The Plexus Slim, The Ease , The Nerve ,  they are all so helpful to me daily. My pain has yet to be eliminated but, it definitely takes the edge off.

Honestly, I catch a lot of shit from people for promoting Plexus, but if they had any idea how much it has truly truly helped me, they would understand. Thats why I share it all the time, if there is someone out there like me ( based on my research there are thousands) that could benefit from these products, as a human , It is my job to share it.

 

Since I am hoping to be able to start doing some sort of exercise again, looking for feedback from the folks out there suffering from chronic pain. What do you do ? Or do you find that it is too difficult to do anything ? There has got to  be something I can do .

Here’s to making 2017 a great year!

Blessings and love to you all!

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Things have changed

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Things have changed drastically in my life since I started my journey.   When I started this, it was a fitness journey. Now my life has become the quest for diagnosis. Not exactly what I wanted out of my life, but this is currently where I am .

So, what does that mean for my blog?

It won’t be as much about weight loss , but rather more about my health issues and daily life. I have to imagine I am not the only one with ongoing medical issues and no diagnosis.

I hope I can share my stories and maybe see some too.

So this is where things currently are in my life medically :

After my disastrous ortho appointment where he basically pressed “repeat” on all the other things doctors have said to me, I went back to my Rheumetologist.  I gotta say, I do really like my Rhumetologist, Dr. Dellaripa.  He actually is very up front with me  and pays attention.  Out of all of the ones I have seen, I feel like it is just as frustrating to him that we cannot figure this out as it is to me.

Dr. Dellaripa wanted to do an MRI.  My knees were in excruciating pain. So , I was down for whatever. I go in for the MRI and the person at the desk asked how my veins were for the contrast.  I told her good, I ,had had  contrast several times before. They call me in.

I’m sitting on the table waiting for the IV.  And he starts to get me into position for the MRI. I questioned , wasn’t I supposed to have the contrast? He goes back and double checks the order, nope, not supposed to have it. We proceed with the MRI. He puts my knee in this boot type thing to keep it down. I thought I was going to scream. It was so painful not being able to move my knee at all, it being locked down in this thing was just horrible.  I was just about to hit the ” help ” button they gave me to stop if I needed to, when it was over. Thank God!

Fast Forward to the next day, Hospital calls me and apologizes profusely that they screwed up and I need to come back to have the MRI done again …..WITH CONTRAST!

To say I was upset and pissed is an understatement. This was complete bullshit.

It was so hard to walk after the first one, I am so glad I had my husband go with me. I was literally hanging on the railings in the hallways to help me walk. So, I was really not looking forward to this one.

This time, they gave me the contrast and it was not as long, thank goodness.

Results – I have arthritis in my knees apparently . It wasn’t there 6 months ago. Also still have enlarged lymph nodes everywhere. Even my knees. Who even knew you have lymph nodes in your knees?  And of course mine are messed up . Dr Dellaripa decided that we are going to treat me with Metheltrexate for the arthritis for the time being.  I had already been tested for Rhumetoid Arthritis and everything came back negative, but he knew I needed something. The plan was to start the meds and go back in a month.

It was definitely a rocky road starting the meds.  Took a few weeks to kick in, to the point where I am now  on a low dose of steroids. But it has been about  4 weeks and there has been a lot of improvement. My right knee is currently pain free. My left knee is still sore, but it is way better than it was .  I even did 5 flights of stairs last week – and survived.  Crazy, right?  Able to fully walk when done.  Don’t get me wrong , I was sore , but I was able to keep pace with everyone for the most part. A victory!

This brings us to last week.  Knees aside, I have not been feeling all that great.  My armpits have been killing me – big indication that I am in the middle of a flare up .  I have not felt any enlarged lymph nodes, but I guess this is their way of letting me know, they are still here.  So, doctor is sending me for another PET Scan , went for more blood work and now
I need to go see a Hematologist.

I flat out asked the dr if its possible that this is cancer and its a slow developing one or if its possible that it could turn into cancer.  His response was ” absolutely “.

Call it naive, call it frustrated, call it fed up , but I thought cancer was off the table.  I guess its on the table, I guess everything is on the table.Bone marrow test too is on the table.   Its like a viking table. Huge and ginormous and full of crap.

I’m looking at things differently than I did before. I am sick, no one knows how sick. And some days are better than others. But I can’t stop living my life.

So, I am not going to stress. I can’t.  I just gotta go day by day and enjoy things as I can .  I know some days will be better than others . And some days is better than no days. I’ll take what I can .

I have a busy week ahead.  Hoping for minimal to no flare ups.

Hoping everyone has a great week !

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A Week of Non Scale Victories!

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Last week was one of the best I have had in a while.  It seems like everything is falling into place.

Lots of Non – Scale victories to share!

1st – My pants are bigger! I have to keep pulling my pants up ! Silly , but it is so cool.  I swear its because of my Plexus Tri-plex . A big thing with Plexus is a healthy gut.  I have been taking the probiotic and biocleanse, as well as my Plexus slim pink drink.  I think its a combo of that and the fact that I am just not as hungry anymore. I am not ravenous. Which leads me to my 2nd victory…

2nd – I always finish my food – get every last bite – go in for seconds – always finish that last bite of my burrito.  Not anymore, I just can’t .  I have NO DESIRE to continue the face stuffing.  AND ITS FREAKING AWESOME!!!  I had trouble finishing chicken fingers and french fries this week.  Now, granted not the most healthy meal, but I have ordered a side of french fries before on top of the fries that come with the food. And I couldn’t even finish it!

3rd – I resisted a full piece of cheesecake at the Cheesecake Factory.  Yes, I can’t believe it either. I usually get a full piece for myself .  This time, I shared with my daughter and even then could not eat half.  THIS IS GINORMOUS FOR ME.

4th – I got into a pair of jeans I have not been able to get into for months.  And it didn’t require acrobatics to zip them up ! This my friends was such a great feeling.

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I also got back into the gym this week! Took it easy but I got in there and moved the best I could!

It was Weightlifting Wednesday.  We started with dead lifts. 3-3-3-3-3.  I warmed up with 85 lbs. I so badly want to beat my 215 lb dead lift, but I have to work back up to it, its gonna be a while.   😦

I started with 85lb as my warm up , then did 105 lb, 135 lb, 145 lb, 150 lb, 155 lb was my final.  Still have such a ways to go.  But I love them dead lifts, so I will keep at it!

Next up was supposed to be goblet squats, but given my knee situation, I did bench squats instead as part of the accessory work. I gotta say, the bending didn’t bother me nearly as bad as I thought it was going to . It was getting up off the ground that was the struggle.

Here is the accessory work :

3 rounds

5×8 bench squats

20 band walk – left and right

10 reverse lateral raises

30 sec dead bug hold

10 skull crushers

 

Like I said, the hardest part was getting up off the ground after the dead bug and the skull crushers.

Looking forward to what the next week will bring!

 

Any non – scale victories to share? I’d love to hear about them!

 

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Back in the saddle….again

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I am not sure how many times you can get ” Back in the Saddle” but hey, I ‘m willing to keep getting in and falling out as long as it takes to get me where I am going.

I am coming off of a month that had no gym.  My back was bad and my knees have been killing me.  But honestly, I am convinced my knees are just because I am such a fat ass at the moment. So, I gots to move .  I know , I know broken record. But hey, its my record and I will play it as many times as needed 🙂

So, I am returning to the gym tomorrow and so happy! It will be lift day .  Hooray ! No better day to get back at it. Fresh start. Fresh month.

On an even more positive note, today marks 3 months flare up free.  3 months!!! No issues, no soreness, no rash.  While there are still no answers to my mystery illness, I am so freaking thankful that I am able to live my life again, free from the bullshit I was dealing with.   I cannot tell you just how much things have changed for the better over the last few months with my health.  I am okay with the fact that I am undiagnosed.  I am happy I got out of my funk and took the leap of faith and gave Plexus a shot.  I am not going to turn the blog into a Plexus infomercial, but man, this shit is awesome!

I noticed today that I have to keep pulling my pants up.  One of the things folks have told me about Plexus and the Triplex is that you lose inches, not pounds on it.  See  you later inches!!! And that is not even why I take it!!!! Another happy bonus.

 

Check back later this week to see how I survive lift day tomorrow!

 

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Something is better than nothing

Happy Sunday Everyone!

The past couple of weeks I did not get into the gym as much as I wanted. Last week was only twice and the week before was only 1( ugh ) time.

While I was not able to do what I wanted fitness wise, I took the next best thing this weekend and joined my husband at Planet Fitness.  Oh.my.goodness.gracious.

This sealed the deal that Planet Fitness is not for everyone, especially me, and that’s okay, but I had to move and Something is better than nothing.

I don’t know if every PF is like this one, but weight machine hogs galore. And the 3 weight benches they had with the barbells attached to the rig, Sweet Baby Jesus…. Once I got in there to do some bench presses – there was only (1) 10 lb plate…. WTF is that ? I looked everywhere.  At that point I was so frustrated with waiting for one, then the disappearing plate, I was ready to go after that.  When we got there, I did time on the elliptical.  Lot harder than I remember, but I did a good amount of time.  I think I can use PF for my cardio needs on the weekend, to get moving.  But I will not be using it for my regular workouts.

I admit it…… I AM A LUNK , lol.  I like to ” Pick things up and put them down” .

b28e395cd96f0bca138f2900265991c4I found this meme and thought it was HILARIOUS! Credit to @the_evolving. ( I  guess )

 

So here is how I did at the workouts I made it to :

Weds 4/6 Lift Day!

Overhead Squats = I really did not think I was going to be able to pull this one off, but lo and behold – I did 5×3 25lbs!!! Winna Winna Chicken Dinna!

Sumo Deadlifts ( which are so much fun! ) 5×3 95lbs.  Its fun, cause you can pretend you are a sumo wrestler, but when I do it, its more like Fat Bastard from Austin Powers.

After that it was accessory work – 3 rounds

20 R/L side steps with side pump

10 dips

20 planks – with kneeoff box ( modified)

20 crunches

Unfortunately, I did not make it back into the gym until the next Monday

This was a killer. Complete KILLA

row 500m

2 rounds = 8 modified burpees, 20 jump squats

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2 rounds = 20 kb swings 26lbs, 10 alt pistols ( mod with TRX)

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2 rounds = 12 pushups, 15 plank jacks

Time was 23:43

Then it was back on Thursday . Yes, I missed my Lift Day 😦

It was a kettlebell night.

All I can say is SWEET BABY JESUS.

4 rounds

8 KB Cleans 26lbs

8 KB front squats ( 2 rounds just Bw squats )

8 KB Jerks 12 lbs

8 Lunges – BW

time was 27:13

This workout was so hard for me.  I was going to stop and cry at one point.  I wanted to finish, I wanted it to be over, I wanted to do it.  I just Kept Swimming.

Honestly surprised I did not cry or pass out.  I was so happy I finished.  IMG_4219

 

Today, I decided to go to one of our State Parks. Maudslay State Park in Newburyport , MA is a place I have been going ever since I was a kid.  I absolutely love it there.  It is a great place for a walk, run, dog walk, picnic, bird watch, horseback riding, kite flying, you name it, its great . Today , they had a telescope set up so visitors could look at Great Horned Owls that were nesting in the trees above the main building.  Its 480 acres of awesomeness. I took a great walk there this afternoon.  Other than the obviously pot smoking teens I walked by, the walk was really great  and super peaceful.  Here’s a little snapshot I took .

IMG_4244I know I don’t look super happy here, but it was a beautiful day . And I thought my hair looked good, lol.

If you get a chance to explore all the Maudslay has to offer, I highly recommend it.  You won’t be disappointed.

 

Bring a water and some binoculars too.  There is so much to see .

 

 

One of the things I have been actively avoiding this week is the fact that 1 year ago, I was really sick and things for our family took a drastic turn when we experienced a fire in our apartment building.  It sucked. 2015 as a whole, truly truly sucked.  On one hand its hard not to think about it, cause all of us are stronger for having gone through it.  I am still frustrated that they have no answers for me as far as my health goes.  I am thankful for Plexus and its effect it has had on my health,  a true ray of hope in my battle against this unknown. I am thankful that my amazing kids adjusted to hotel life, then to living in a whole new town, going to new schools and have THRIVED. My kids are unbelievable.  At least I know we are doing this parenting thing right. All 3 of my kids are exceeding expectations in all areas.  I am so proud of them.

So far, 2016 , it has been a pretty good year.  Here’s hoping it continues.

Wonder what this week has instore? Gotta keep swimming!

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Refuse to Sink

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Refuse to Sink.

I think this is a perfect way to explain how I feel right now.

My health, my life, my well being, I have taken  matters into my own hands and sticking with what works for me.

I Refuse to Sink.  I will Keep Swimming.  I will conquer no matter how long it takes.

 

 

 

This week at the gym, I was really proud of myself. Here is how I did:

Monday

8 min AMRAP

5 push press – 25 lbs

6 box jumps – I am jumping on 2 plates right now,

working my way back up to the box, currently at 7″

7 KB swings 0 26 lbs

I got 5 rounds, 11 reps

6 min AMRAP

6 thrusters – 25lbs

60 single jumps

I got 3 rounds.  Whoa Nelly were those jumps harder than I thought! Snuck up on me!

4 mins- as many backsquats as possible – 15 lbs – I got 60.

To say my legs were burnin would be an understatement.

Wednesday – Lift day!!!

My favorite!!! Wish it was every day 🙂

Back Squats

3-3-3-3 increasing weight after warm up set .  6lb- 75 lb- 85 lb – 95lbs!!!!!!   Yeah baby – 95 lbs, how the hell did I pull that out?!?!

Push Press

3-3-3-3

60 lb- 65 lbs- 70 lb- 75 lbs

Here are some pics from my Push Press -courtesy of my girl Alicia 🙂

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And – Can I just say , I didn’t look as bad from the back as I thought I would , lol

 

 

Accessory work / 3 rounds

10 single leg dead lifts – 18lbs

8 seated presses – 18lbs

30 frog pumps

(3) 20 second hollow holds

Thursday

4 rounds

200 m row

15 wall balls – 8lbs

15 box jumps – ( actually 7″ plates )

15 hollow tucks

I completed this in ……. get ready for it……. 18:24 !!!!!!   What the frack ?!?!?  I was dying, sweat dripping, eyeballs sweaty, ready to puke, but I DID IT!

Honestly, I believe it was the power of MC HAMMER , that propelled me.  We had a 90’s throwback jams playlist going , along with Hammer , we had Humpty Hump, No Diggity, you get the gist.  I was 2 Legit 2 Quit! It was quite the interesting class.  Coach Jane always makes it fun.

 

I have got to tell you folks, yours truly , is back at it , back in the game, and the Swim is strong! After the past year and a half of all my various crap, I am back doing what I need to do for me .

Managing my condition, once I had a better understanding of what is going on and how my body is reacting to things with the info from my drs, was number 1.

I needed to get working out.  I really just love working out in this format.  I do. I feel good, I feel strong , I feel fierce. I feel freakin awesome!

In addition, adding Plexus into my daily routine has helped so much . It has really helped me so much, I cannot even put it into words.  I wish I had discovered it sooner.  The funny thing is, I didn’t realize how much I wear my emotions on my face. I keep hearing how people can tell I am feeling better. How crazy is that?   I signed up to be a Plexus Ambassador because this product is now something I  NEED, I do. I figured why now get the most of it as possible.  If you are interested in learning about Plexus or want to give it a whirl – check  out my site : Meg’s Plexus Site.

Or shoot me an email – lets chat. lessthighsmorethunder@gmail.com

I feel better than I have in such a long time.

It’s taken me a while and its a long road, but I feel I am at the start of a great part of this journey!

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A Most Excellent Week Indeed

Happy Saturday Everyone!

I gotta say, I have really had such a great week, all around.

Back in the gym 3 nights this week.  Sore today from it , but its the good sore 🙂  Not the bad sore I have been experiencing the last year or so .

 

Wednesday was Lift Day, as you know – MY FAVORITE! And it was dead lifts!!! I was very happy with how I did , but it just drove home that I am starting over and I have to let the numbers and how I used to be able to do things, go. And I used to get really frustrated with that, but now, I am in a much better place with it.  Would I have loved to go in and rock a 220 lb Deadlift smashing my goal? Of course, but I was very happy I made it up to 95 lbs.

Starting over and that’s okay.

Here is how I did Wednesday :

5 sets 10 reps sit to stand squats on low box – yes, folks – we are reduced to squatting on a box.  But it is totally okay, cause honestly the struggle with it was REAL.  I was dying. So, it is most definitely a good place to start.

 

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Onto dead lifts :

10 @55lbs

8 @65 lbs

6 @75lbs

4 @85lbs

2 @95lbs!

Then there was 3 rounds of accessory work :

10 trx rows

10 resistance band pulls – supposed to be bench dips but i had a hard time with that

Planks! i did about 20 seconds on each one

 

Here is how I did Thursday :

I got some new sneakers for the gym, that did not work out so well. They were too big and my feet were literally coming out of them while rowing. So the rest of the workout was barefoot.  Never stop Swimming!

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4 rounds

500 m row

17 TRX lunges

17 push ups

17 v ups ( or what ever you call my version, lol, to the knee)

I finished in 30:54 , cap was 35:00 so I was really happy that I got it done in time, even modified.

 

Excited to go back next week.  This is what I need, I just need to do my part and actually go.

 

This week – I am happy to report that I have done awesome with my no soda, no bread , no pasta changes.  It may not seem big to some people, but believe me, It is HUGE for me.

Overall, things are pretty great at the moment.  I kept on swimming, and I will continue to swim.  Hope you do too, no matter what the situation.

Have a great weekend everyone!

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